Once you make the decision to buy a house, it's time to start saving. And then to save some more.
Between putting money down, keeping up with mortgage payments and repairs, and maintaining your emergency fund, you can never have too much stashed away.
But how much do you need, really, before you're ready to make a purchase?
Eric Roberge, CFP and founder of Beyond Your Hammock, tells CNBC that the biggest sign you've saved up enough is if you could comfortably afford to move in today.
"The No. 1 sign that you have enough saved for buying a home is that you can easily put 20 percent down, have 10 percent for closing costs and other move-in expenses and feel comfortable affording the expected monthly mortgage payment," he says.
You don't necessarily need to put a full 20 percent down, but having enough to do so regardless provides a nice financial cushion for the expected, yet irregular, costs that are bound to arise, including insurance, new furniture and any updates or repairs.
"Both you and the mortgage provider will feel much more comfortable if you are entering the buying process in this position of strength," Roberge says.